Prof. Lawrence Hill

The University of Guelph has a new President’s Advisory Committee on Anti-Racism (PACAR). Co-chaired by Lawrence Hill, a professor in the School of English and Theatre Studies and a renowned author and advocate of racial equality, the committee will make recommendations for addressing racism and promoting equity, diversity and inclusivity.

The creation of PACAR was a key component of the University’s 14-point Anti-Racism Action Plan released by U of G president Dr. Charlotte Yates in fall 2020. The action plan includes and builds on recommendations made by students, faculty, staff and community members who have advocated for change. In addition to helping implement the action plan, PACAR members will advise U of G leaders on addressing racism and discrimination in the University community.

PACAR will also work collaboratively to develop an anti-racism policy and promote anti-racism efforts at U of G. This includes identifying and addressing systemic barriers to full and equal participation on our campuses, as well as in University policies, procedures and practices.

“There was a tremendous response from the University community to our call for nominations,” Yates said.

“We are so thankful to everyone who put their name forward to help us with this important work.”

The first meeting of PACAR will be in January 2021.

Members are the following:


  • Dr. Charlotte Yates, president
  • Prof. Lawrence Hill, School of English and Theatre Studies, College of Arts

Student Members:

  • Rojelais Abdullah-Muhammad, University of Guelph-Humber student
  • Malissa Bryan, graduate student, College of Social and Applied Human Sciences
  • Judith Cadeau da Costa, graduate student, Ontario Veterinary College
  • Brianna Martey, undergraduate student, College of Arts
  • Chioma Nwebube, undergraduate student, College of Biological Science
  • Keana Shahin, graduate student, Ontario Veterinary College

Faculty Members:

  • Dr. Lawrence Goodridge, Department of Food Science, Ontario Agricultural College
  • Dr. Jade Ferguson, School of English and Theatre Studies, College of Arts
  • Dr. Ann Pegoraro, Lang Chair in Sport Management, Gordon S. Lang School of Business and Economics
  • Dr. Melissa Perreault,  Department of Biomedical Sciences, Ontario Veterinary College

Staff Members:

  • Samir Baijal, building and program operations, University Centre Services
  • Rattan Gill, technology transfer manager, Research Innovation Office
  • Jimmi Hemmenbach, regional operations manager, Middle East and South Asia, Admission Services

Standing Committee Members:

  • Dr. Gwen Chapman, interim provost and vice-president (academic)
  • Indira Naidoo-Harris, associate vice-president (diversity and human rights)
  • Gen Gauthier-Chalifour, University secretary
  • Dr. Cara Wehkamp, special adviser to the president on Indigenous Issues
  • Alexis Charles, coordinator, cultural diversity programs, Student Experience

External Community Members:

  • Dr. Joy Sammy, diversity manager, Upper Grand District School Board
  • Bruce Weaver, Seven Generations Forward Council

President Charlotte Yates
President Charlotte Yates